Skip to main content

Full text of "Public space and modern architecture : design guidelines for the plazas surrounding the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Headquarters, Washington, DC"

See other formats

Public Space and 
Modern Architecture: 

Design Guidelines for the 
Plazas Surrounding the 
U\S. Department of Housing and 
Urban Development Headquarters 
washington, dc 


■p "^ li *Ei "si ET "^"M m 

^pmmi^Mm m m 

Background Facts 
AND Historical Notes 

The Design Challenge 

The Charrette Response 

Fundamental Design Principles 

Master Planning and 
Long-Range Design Guidelines 

Immediate Recommendations 

Three Conceptual Schemes 

Management and Process Guidelines 24 

Appendix 1 : 

Summary of the Guidelines 

Appendix 2: 

Agency Participants 

Appendix 3: 
Charrette Agenda 

Public Space and Modern Architecture: 

Design Guidelines for the 
Plazas Surrounding the 
U.S. Department of Housing and 
Urban Development Headquarters 
Washington, DC 

Prepared tor the 
Department of Housing and 
Urban Development and the 
General Services Administration 

Prepared by the 

Design Program of the 

National Endowment tor the Arts 

Thomas Walton, Ph.D. 


School of Architecture and Planning 

The Catholic University of America 

Washington, DC 

October 1 994 

Background Facts and Historical Notes 

It is a classic example of Modern architecture - 
a powerful building sitting like a piece of sculp- 
ture on a vast plaza. In this case, the edifice in 
question is the U.S. Department of Housing 
and Urban Development (HUD) headquarters 
in Washington, DC. Located at 451 Seventh 
Street, SW, it was designed between 1963 and 
1965 by the highly acclaimed Modern archi- 
tect, furniture designer and theorist Marcel 
Breuer. The H-shaped plan with concave fa- 
cades articulated as bands of rectangular cast 
stone window modules was typical of Breuer's 
aesthetic and representative of a philosophy of 
design referred to as New Brutalism. To em- 
phasize the building's structure and open up 
the ground plane, perimeter bays were lifted 
off the ground by massive Y-shaped piers or 
"pilotis." This created a covered arcade along 
the edge of the structure but left entrances 
recessed and largely hidden from view. 

As was common in the Modern style, the 
building and elements surrounding it were 
sited as if they were components of an abstract 
composition. The building was placed as a 
dynamic object in the middle of a grand plaza. 
A freestanding, multistory pylon was used to 
carry the name of the agency and accentuate 
the main public entrance. Ramps and low walls 
on the east edge of the site hallmarked the 
entry and exit to the garage. And the plaza 
itself was treated as a continuous plain of blue- 
stone pavers, the neutral background for a 
monumental work of art. 

To some extent, this sense of grandeur might 
be attributed to the fact that the HUD project 
was the first large commission designed in 

response to President Kennedy's 1962 Guiding 
Principles for Federal Architecture, a mandate 
that called for "an architectural style which is 
distinguished and which will reflect the dignity, 
enterprise, vigor and stability of the American 
national government... (and) embody the 
finest contemporary American architectural 
thought. " Fulfilling this vision, when President 
Johnson dedicated the structure on September 
9, 1968, he exploited it as a message "to create 
a Nation that will always be like this building - 
bold and beautiful. " 

HUD is also a landmark from an urban 
design perspective as it was a key element in 
the master plan for the District of Columbia's 
Southwest Washington Redevelopment Area, 
a post- World War II effort to revive an area 
of the capital that most people perceived as a 
slum. Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, land 
was purchased, old structures were demolished, 
and parcels resold to create a mixed-use enclave 
of new apartments, townhouses, government 
offices, commercial spaces, parks, schools and 
churches. Symbolically, by taking the lead in 
building on a site within this project, HUD 
demonstrated its commitment to urban re- 
newal across the nation. 

Today, the Breuer design is one of several 
large federal offices in the area. It is accessible 
by Metro (L'Enfant Plaza Station) and the 
Virginia Railway Express commuter line. Its 
eastern boundary - Seventh Street, SW - has 
been designated a "Special Street" in the Com- 
prehensive Plan for the National Capital pre- 
pared by the National Capital Planning Com- 
mission, a "major street" in the Streetscape 






















- pm Bi ■ '' 
H ?« r r r 




Symbolically, by taking 
the lead in building on 
a site within the southwest 
Washington Redevelopment 
Area, HUD demonstrated 
its commitment to urban 
renewal across the nation. 

Background Facts and Historical Notes, Continued 

Manual prepared by an interagency group 
composed of federal and District of Columbia 
agencies, and holds the potential of becoming 
a major pedestrian route connecting the Mall 
to Southwest Washington's Potomac River 

Programmatically, the HUD building is ten 
stories tall, contains about 1.16 million square 
feet of space and is home to some 3800 federal 
employees. There is cramped underground 
parking for approximately 400 cars beneath the 
east plaza; 95 above-ground spaces - including 
several for van pools - in the north plaza; and 
105 at-grade spaces shoehorned into the south 

plaza (many of these are assigned to agency 
VIPs). Inside, most of the ground floor is 
used as a cafeteria with seating that looks out 
through a window wall to a landscaped west 
plaza. There is a daycare center in the north 
basement with access to a play area on the 
north side of the west plaza. Almost all of the 
remaining space is given over to offices. There 
are only a few meeting rooms, the largest of 
which holds 175 people. 

fpjBpjppwaip'S'B'r* '■ "■ ' 


■l^ppVSW'rr r- cr I 
I ■ pi p b ta 19 D r- F ( I 

f pS (P p » r- r t- r r .■ r 

^ p p W ;>l K li » V r t f[}i :i 

The Design Challenge 


THE American population 


Since the design of the HUD building was 
begun in 1963, many things have changed. 
Philosophically, the design and aesthetic prin- 
ciples of Modern architecture have been called 
into question. In one facet of this debate, the 
heroic ideal of buildings as elegant sculptures 
located in ideal settings independent of other 
structures has been criticized as undermining 
the necessarily dense fabric of the city and the 
vitality that density nurtures along the street. 
From a distance, a building like the HUD 
headquarters might distinguish itself as an 
impressive composition. But on closer inspec- 
tion, it frequently appears isolated from the life 
of the city, and the open space around it risks 
becoming an unused wasteland or, as it has in 
this case, a battleground of pedestrian and 
vehicular uses. No one has seriously considered 
tearing the Breuer building down, but clearly 
there is a need to integrate the design more 
effectively with the surrounding neighborhood 
and the monumental core of the capital. 

The goals and strategies used by HUD have 
also changed. In the 1960s, the basic model for 
improving the urban environment encouraged 
slum clearance and the rebuilding of entire 
sections of cities. As the decades passed, how- 
ever, it became clear that more sensitive and 
subtle approaches were needed. Now redevel- 
opment has to respect and nurture existing 
neighborhoods, encourage a mix of different 

functions, and invite a cross-section of the 
American population to make a home within 
the boundaries of any particular project. Re- 
flecting these ideals, under the leadership of 
President Bill Clinton and Secretary Henry 
Cisneros, HUD's mission is "to help people 
create communities of opportunity," a task it 
supports with five Community Empowerment 

i:' A Commitment to Community 

I A Commitment to Support Families 

A Commitment to Economic Lift 

A Commitment to Reciprocity and to Bal- 
ancing Individual Rights and Responsibilities 

A Commitment to Reducing the Separations 
by Race and Income in American Life 

Given the shift in focus from large scale projects 
to a more human and value-oriented mission, 
it seems worthwhile to explore the possibilities 
that some dimension of the Community Em- 
powerment Principles might be evident in the 
design of the agency's headquarters. 

With an emphasis on improving the exterior 
spaces around the HUD building, more spe- 
cific recommendations for change have emerged 
from various user groups. Secretary Cisneros 
takes advantage of the east plaza as a forum for 
greeting important visitors as well as announc- 
ing major programs and policy initiatives, and 
his office would like the space to more easily 

The Design Challenge, continued 

and gracefully accommodate those events. Staff 
comment on the need for more greenery and 
the desire for a people-friendly environment 
with alternative places to sit and perhaps even 
hold informal meetings. Safety and access for 
persons with disabilities are concerns. Creating 
places for vendors, exhibits and artwork would 
also be valued improvements and provide a 
chance to express the cultural diversity of 
HUD's workforce and the nation-at-large. 
Finally, the nearby community and District 
of Columbia government would be open to 
options for using the HUD plazas for local 
events and generating a better civic presence 
for the building and the agency. 

A last arena of change has to do with the 
physical state of the HUD structure. Since it 
was completed in 1968, there have been several 
modifications to the exterior areas that have 
deviated from Breuer's original design. En- 
closed vestibules replaced the revolving doors 
on the north and south lobbies. A curb cut 
driveway was substituted for a vehicular 
dropoff that maintained the continuity of the 
paving and was level with the rest of the plaza, 
simply delineating the roadway with pyramidal 
bollards. Gutters have been added above the 
pilotis in front of exterior entrances. Security 
cameras have been mounted on the facades of 
the building. Single-bulbed street lights have 
been installed in place of Breuer's multi-bulbed 
fixtures. And a variety of miscellaneous planters 

have been installed to provide more green on 
the plaza. Together, these and other changes 
have eroded the integrity of the Breuer design 
without really improving the environment 
around the HUD building. 

Fortunately, a soon-to-be-implemented 
U.S. Cjeneral Services Administration (GSA) 
waterproofing and paving replacement project 
for HUD's east and north plazas has created 
an opportunity to re-examine the design and 
future development of the exterior spaces. The 
interesting thing is that, although this effort is 
modest in scale and budget, it still provides a 
unique opportimity to address the broad spec- 
trum of issues discussed above. The redesign 
of the HUD's plazas can reflect emerging phi- 
losophies of urban design, the agency's value- 
oriented mission, the specific aspirations of 
various user groups and the general desire to 
have the spaces around the building serve as 
a model of design excellence, respectful of 
Breuer's original design but open to change 
and innovation. 

Bring the daycare center out 
of the basement and into the 
plaza to express that family is 
part of your workday. " 

- Debra Mitchell ■ 



The redesign of the 
hud's plazas can reflect 
emerging philosophies of 
urban design, the agency's 
value-oriented mission, 
the specific aspirations of 
various user groups and 
the general desire to have 
the spaces around the 
building serve as a model 
of design excellence. 

The Charrette Response 

Since, in terms of schedule, the GSA water- 
proofing and paving effort was imminent, there 
was a need to sohcit design advice expeditiously 
in order to get the most out of expanding the 
GSA project to include a response to the 
broader range of issues involved in the redevel- 
opment of the HUD plazas. The good news 
was that both agencies were willing to go the 
extra mile and immediately sought advice from 
the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) 
Design Program as to the best course of action. 
At this point, Thomas Grooms, manager of 
NEAs Federal Design Improvement Program, 
recommended convening a "charrette." 
(Charrette comes from a French phrase describ- 
ing the hectic rush oi students at the Ecole des 
Beaux-Arts to complete their architectural 
drawings, and today, refers to a concise but 
thorough study of any particular design prob- 
lem.) From experience, Grooms knew that the 
outcome from this intense meeting would be a 
design vision for the plazas — not a final pro- 
posal but a valuable set of guidelines for anyone 
chosen to develop the project in detail. 

Things started to happen quickly once the 
GSA and HUD agreed to the charrette strategy. 
June 29-30, 1994 were chosen as the dates for 
the event, and a multi-disciplinary team was 
invited to participate in the two-day event. 
M. David Lee, vice president of the Boston 
architecture and planning firm Stull and Lee, 
Inc. and adjunct professor at Harvard Univer- 
sity was selected to head the design team. The 
other members of the charrette teams were 

Michael Alexander, artistic director of Califor- 
nia Plaza, the central public space of a Los 
Angeles mixed-use redevelopment site managed 
by Metropolitan Structures West, Inc.; Peter 
Blake, architect, professor of architecture, au- 
thor and renowned critic of the Modern move- 
ment; Reginald W. Griffith, Executive Director 
of the National Capital Planning Commission; 
Pamela G. Holt, Executive Director of the 
District of Columbia Commission on the Arts 
and Humanities; Nora Jaso, architect and prin- 
cipal of Studio Jaso, her Seattle-based design 
firm specializes in cultural and artistic expres- 
sion; Debra Mitchell, landscape architect and 
senior principal and director of the mid-Atlan- 
tic office of the Johnson Johnson & Roy/inc. 
landscape architecture firm; Robert Peck, 
Group Vice President, External Affairs, for the 
American Institute of Architects and a member 
of the Commission of Fine Arts in Washington, 
DC; and Jay S. Willis, a three-dimensional 
artist and professor of Fine Arts at the Univer- 
sity of Southern California. HUD, GSA, and 
NEA each selected appropriate members of 
their agencies to participate. NEA also asked a 
representative from the U.S. Department of 
Transportation, which has its headquarters 
across the street from HUD, to participate. 

When this diverse group of experts gathered 
in a HUD headquarters conference room at the 
end of June, they had a full agenda. There were 
presentations on Breuer and the history of the 
HUD design; an overview of planning and 
urban design issues related to the HUD site 
and surrounding areas; a tour of the building 
and plazas; and input concerning priorities 
related to the redesign of the plazas from 
people representing such constituencies as 



"The design team started as a 
new set of eyes in Washington — 
coming to look at our charge, 
the HUD Plaza. We saw this 
project not as a problem but as 
an opportunity for improvement 
and new uses. " 

- Alan Brangman 

Functional Issues 

I How can the 7th Street 
plaza's utility be enhanced for 

I How can the 7th Street plaza 
design help support the urban 
setting of the neighborhood? 

I How can the activity of 
contemplation occur on the 
7th Street plaza? 

] How can user access to the 
building be maintained across 
the 7th Street plaza? 

I How can the amenity of 
food be added to the 7th 
Street plaza? 

I How can the plaza design 
respond to comprehensive 
plans for the National Capital? 

How can a performing arts 
space be integrated into the 
7th Street plaza? 

How can security issues be 

"I he idea of capturing these 
pockets of opportunity all the 
way around the building is 
very important. " 

- Debra Mitchell 

Aesthetic Issues 

I How can the front door to 
HDD's headquarters portray a 
stronger image of the agency 

I How can the design make 
a positive statement about 
HUD's goals relating to the 
creation of livable and attrac- 
tive urban environments? 

J How can Marcel Breuer's 
design intent be respected as 
a significant architectural 

Technical Issues 

I How can the structural 
integrity of the new surfacing 
be maintained? 

How can employee parking 
needs be managed without 
causing structural damage 
to the waterproofing? 

Blacks in Government, the Disabled in Gov- 
ernment, the HUD 'Women's Policy Commit- 
tee, the Asian Pacific employees group, the Gay 
and Lesbian Organization, the Neighborhood 
Advisory Commission, and the District of 
Columbia Commission on Arts and Humani- 
ties. There was a viewing of the William Whyte 
film City Spaces, Human Places, and over a 
day and a half, there was extensive and lively 
debate on problems and opportunities as well 
as general strategies for implementing design 

Part of the discussion was influenced by a 
list of questions prepared in advance for the 
charrette team (listed to left). 

In the end, the charrette team responded to 
most of these concerns, but believed it was 
critical to place them in a context that empha- 
sized developing a master plan for the entire 
HUD site. In essence, the conclusion of the 
team was that the details and implementation 
of a design solution for the east plaza were 
inextricably linked to long-term proposals for 
the other plazas and spaces around the build- 
ing, the HUD mission, and the relationship 
of the HUD site to the city and the adjoining 
neighborhood. Based on this conviction, they 
put forth guidelines in these areas: 

' Fundamental Design Principles 

I Master Planning and Long-Range Design 

Immediate Recommendations 

Management and Process Guidelines 

In the pages that follow, these become headings 
for elaborating on the specific guidelines them- 


Fundamental Design Principles 

The members of charrette team identified 
several design principles they felt should be 
evident throughout the HUD site independent 
of any particular master plan for the area or 
detailed project for the east and north plazas. 
With no ranking in terms of priority, these are 
discussed in this section ol the report. 

Humanism should be the guiding force 
in the redevelopment of the hud plazas. 

This is not seen as a statement about aesthetics 
but rather a comment on a key general at- 
tribute that should be present throughout the 
site. In terms of overall concept and detail, 
designs for the plazas should engage, that is, 
elicit a positive and compelling response from 
the many groups that might use the spaces. 
Regardless of style - the forms, materials and 
activities on the HUD block should satisfy 
users intellectually and emotionally. 

The plazas should primarily be designed 
to serve pedestrians. cars should only 
be a secondary consideration in the 


Presently, cars and vans have overwhelmed the 
HUD site. With its curb ciu driveway, much of 
the east plaza is dedicated to vehicular drop-off 
as well as the garage entry and exit. On the 
west plaza, the current design of the roof and 
vents over the service bays leave that space 
largely unusable. In addition, extensive parking 
on the north (about 95 spaces) and south pla- 
zas (about 105 spaces) makes those areas unin- 
viting, creates a sense of clutter and chaos, and 
contradicts the original design of the building. 
The charrette team did not feel the cars had to 
be eliminated. Rather, the design for the out- 
door space has to make pedestrian uses the 
highest priority, controlling and minimizing 
the impact of automotive traffic. 

The charrette did not allow time or the depth 
of analysis to make specific recommendations 
regarding art for the HUD plazas, but there is 
no doubt that art has to be a significant and 
inherent component of the master plan and 
proposals for the current project. Paving seems 
an almost unavoidable medium for artistic 
expression, but there are many other possibili- 
ties - lighting, the back walls of L'Enfant Plaza, 
the vents over the service area, and more dy- 
namic commissions including video displays, to 
name just a few. And since it is possible that 
the recommended design might not be accom- 
modated within the present budget and phas- 
ing of the plaza development, the master plan 
should specify how art, in its scope and charac- 
ter, is an integral part of the design, making it 
clear that without this dimension the project is 

The design should embody "HUD-iness," 
creating an appropriate image for the 
agency and helping to generate a strong 
self-image for hud employees. 

HUD can be proud of many accomplishments 
as its programs have reshaped the American 
landscape. In particular, the charrette team was 
especially excited by the most recent HUD 
mission statement and wants to see it inter- 
preted in the design solution. Without specify- 
ing how this might be accomplished, the mas- 
ter plan and cietails for the outdoor space 
should reflect HUD's commitment to commu- 
nity, family, inclusiveness, and economic and 
social vitality in a way that creates an effective 
public image for the agency and a profile that 
reconfirms the importance of the work done by 
HUD employees. 





There should be provisions in the design 
concept to include demonstrations of 
what hud is about. 
Several employees described their work as 
"pushing papers ' or "making grants." The 
charrette team, on the other hand, conceived of 
HUD's work as the reality of the many build- 
ings, communities and projects it underwrites. 
In the design of the open spaces, this three- 
dimensional reality needs to make itself known. 
This could take many forms but two that were 
mentioned were exhibits ("a museum of the 
American community" is the way one team 
member put it) and on-going demonstration 
projects (a garden, a house or some other model 
or mock-up of a HUD-supported effort). 

The design should be a "theatre of 

Having heard from African Americans, 
Asian Pacific Americans, the disabled, women, 
gays and lesbians, and other employees, the 
charrette team was impressed with what was 
inevitably a much broader spectrum of groups 
that made up the HUD workforce and its 
constituency. Again without stipulating an 
approach, the team hopes that this breadth 
of cultures, talents and energies - what was 
described as a "theatre of contrast" - can some- 
how be expressed in the design of the HUD 

This is an issue that requires thoughtful and 
subtle judgment calls. Certainly the integrity 
and beauty of Breuer's original design needs to 
be respected and in some cases restored. At the 
same time, many of the guidelines discussed in 

"The paving itself can become 
artwork. . . the original idea of 
this building as a large object 
on a field is not compromised 
but strengthened by having that 
artwork be responsive to all the 
HUD goals." 

- Norajaso 


Fundamental Design Principles, continued 


this report would never have been part of the 
1963 project. What should be defined are crite- 
ria and boundaries that clarify the extent to 
which Breuer's scheme for the exterior spaces 
and ground floor might be modified to better 
suit the changing HUD mission, its constitu- 
ency, and the building's urban context. With- 
out abandoning any of the essential features of 
the project as an example of Modern architec- 
ture, the structure and its site should be re- 
garded as a working headquarters of an impor- 
tant government agency rather than as an arti- 
fact to be preserved. 

The design should avoid "trendy" 

The principle here is to develop the site in as 
timeless a manner as possible, spurning details 
that could later be interpreted as dated or fad- 

Reflecting HDD's mission, the design 


The urban context of the HUD building has 
changed significantly since it was completed 
in 1968. The adjacent Southwest Washington 
Redevelopment Area is largely complete. 
Seventh Street, SW - HUD's front door - 
has been designated a "Special Street ' by the 
National Capital Planning Commission and 
clearly holds the potential of becoming a major 
link between the Mall and the Potomac River 

waterfront. And the city seeks to foster better 
relationships with the federal institutions 
within its boundaries. For all these reasons, the 
design of the HUD plazas should respond to 
local priorities and needs of the neighboring 


I Employees and those coming as HUD guests 
or on HUD business (the Sam to 5pm crowd). 

i Local residents and those who come to the 
area after 5 pm 

I Daily, weekend and out-of-town visitors. 

It is clear that the HUD plazas should be devel- 
oped to serve many needs. The highest priority 
should be given to satisfying agency and gov- 
ernment employee requirements. Local resi- 
dents and those attracted to the area after 5 pm 
also deserve consideration - the students that 
pass through the site on the way to Jefferson 
Junior High School, neighborhood groups that 
might want to use the plazas for outdoor activi- 
ties, people that come to Southwest Washing- 
ton to dine or go to the theatre, and others 
constituencies. Finally, the outdoor space could 
be designed to have some meaning for tourists, 
individuals that use Seventh Street as a route to 
other destinations, and those that are drawn to 
this part of the city for weekend events. 


Master Planning and Long-Range Design Guidelines 

Having a master plan for the entire HUD site 
is the basis for and a crucial prelude to develop- 
ing detailed proposals for the east and north 
plazas. This master plan should be reviewed by 
all the appropriate agencies and constituent 
groups. It should embody the Fundamental 
Design Principles just outlined. It also should 
respond to the more specific concerns listed 

Movement to, through and around the 
hud site should be clear and gracious. 
Circulation on the HUD site is complex. There 
are separate entrances for employees and visi- 
tors. Commuters come out the back door of 
the L'Enfant Plaza complex and walk through 
or around the building. Neighborhood users 
crisscross the block in a variety of ways. And 
taxis and private cars use the east, north and 
south plazas for drop-off and parking. Given 
this situation, it is no surprise that, at present, 
pathways to the entrances and around the 
HUD building are confusing, unattractive, 
possibly unsafe. This issue requires careful 
study and analysis, after which the design 
team should prepare a master plan that clarifies 
the circulation options and develops each as a 
thoughtfully designed passage to, through or 
around the site. 


The recessed lobbies and the fact that certain 
entrances can only be used by HUD employees 
and government workers leave first-time visi- 
tors wandering in a bewildered fashion around 
the building. The pylon at the south end of the 

east plaza was meant to announce the "front 
door" but does not adequately fulfill that pur- 
pose. The conclusion of the charrette team was 
that the main public entrance should to be 
more richly celebrated and distinguished from 
secondary entry points. 

The development of a quality environment 
that is universally accessible should be 
a high priority. 

This goes beyond simply providing accessibil- 
ity. The point, here, is to devise a master plan 
and detailed proposals that provide equally 
compelling and pleasurable outdoor experi- 
ences for all users. 



In the interim, the aesthetics of parking 

should take precedence over capacity. It is 

clear Irom Breuer's plans that a modest number 
of automobiles were to be accommodated at 
the entrance level of the HUD building. The 
present situation, however, goes well beyond 
anything he envisioned and has a detrimental 
effect on the integrity of the building's design 
and, more significantly, on the pedestrian use 
of the various plazas. Getting rid ot the cars 
and vans is lundamental to improving the qual- 
ity of the open space, and the charrette team 
unanimously endorsed the development of a 
plan to remove all, or almost all, of the at-grade 
parking in a phased program that would imme- 
diately minimize the negative aesthetic impact 
of any vehicles that might temporarily be 
permitted to continue parking around the 

"If this is going to become the 
sort of building that symbolizes 
what HUD does, the building 
has to be thought ofii< <i qoiera- 
tor of activities. " 

- Robert Peck 


*' « ^ ig iSf 13 "n "^ «' W I* ■' ■''5 

STiBSKMrniiiiiFminBiiiiit 9F' 

5 y ;? -.5 s -- s pr -1 --■ ". 'm fBi "1 « *' j 

The East Plaza should 
be developed as a 
"ceremonial" space 
but flexible enough for 
informal uses and events. 


Paving, color and lighting should be 
carefully considered aspects of the 


Both as art and as matter of detail, three of the 
most important elements in the master plan 
and current project are paving, color and light- 
ing. They are inevitable components of any 
effort and, if developed to their full potential, 
can make major contributions to the success of 
the HUD plazas. They do not necessarily need 
to be used in complex or dramatic ways, but 
they should enhance the unity and vitality of 
the open space. It is also worth mentioning 
that lighting under or along the pilotis arcade 
was brought up by several users as an issue that 
needed to be addressed. 


As they are today, each of the HUD plazas has 
its own distinct use and is perceptually isolated 
from the areas next to it. One of the outcomes 

of the master plan should be a vision for the 
HUD site that deals with all the open space as 
a single entity. This does not mean that the 
character of the various plazas has to be uni- 
form. Indeed, each can have its own identity, 
but somehow they have to be visually and 
aesthetically linked as parts of a larger, unified 

The east plaza should be developed as 
a "ceremonial" space. 

The east plaza is clearly the main entrance to 
HUD. It is also the area that the Secretary likes 
to use to greet important visitors and announce 
new programs and initiatives. Aesthetically and 
functionally, then, it should have a ceremonial 
profile and become a sort of three-dimensional 
logo for the agency. It should also have the 
infrastructure - staging, podiums, sound sys- 
tems, access to power, etc. — necessary to sup- 
port major public presentations (most of the 


Master Planning and Long-range Design Guidelines, continued 

equipment might be stored nearby rather than 
be permanently installed). The one caveat is 
that this formal quality should not preclude 
the possibility of exploiting the space or parts 
of the space for more casual uses or events. 
Ceremonial and flexible should be the two 
key dimensions of the east plaza. 

The west plaza should be redesigned to 
better respond to its site conditions and 
the various ways it is used by office 
workers and commuters. 
The west plaza is the more intimate, people 
space on the HUD site. Commuters to and 
from the L'Enfant Plaza Metro station con- 
stantly pass through the area. A large portion 
of it is landscaped with trees and flowers. An 
elevated section over the service bays is planted 
with grass. A playground for the daycare center 
currently fills the north corner of the site. 
There is a long row of benches for smokers and 
people who want to eat or take a break outside. 
Glass walls along the ground floor of this side 
of the HUD building visually tie the cafeteria 
through the pilotis arcade to the outdoor space. 
The trouble is that all these elements seem to 
exist independently. The master plan should 
outline a more coherent blending of landscape 
and people-oriented features. It should suggest 
ways the area could be used by vendors and for 
employee events. It should propose strategies 
for more effectively linking the various levels 
and types of spaces in the plaza. 


At this time, HUD's daycare operation is 
located in the basement of the building and 
access to the playground is restricted. The de- 
sign team should explore alternative locations 
for the center and its play area and include 
recommendations regarding these functions 
within the master plan and its more detailed 
proposals for the site. 

"Greenery" should be a theme in the 

Almost all the users who made statements to 
the charrette team about the plaza project com- 
mented on the need for more "greenery." Obvi- 
ously, the east plaza planters do not fill the bill 
and the charrette team believes they should be 
removed. As was just noted, the west plaza 
landscaping should also be redesigned. More- 
over, there might be opportunities for greenery 
on the north and south plazas. The only advice 
offered to the design team as it considers this 
requirement is that non-plant as well as living 
material be investigated as options for fulfilling 
this need. Because of underground fiicilities. 


"The mission of HUD is to be 
welcoming and inclusive. This 
building must be a good neigh- 
bor in how it responds to its 
immediate context by creating 
opportunities to be welcoming 
and inclusive. " 

- David Lee 

only a few areas of the site will support large 
trees. A combination of natural and man-made 
media may be an ideal and necessary solution 
to the greenery problem. 

In addition to any permanent features, 
the design should support a variety of 
temporary uses and structures. 
Mention has already been made about develop- 
ing the ability to stage public presentations on 
the east plaza, but other kinds of activities 
might also make use of temporary structures. 
Vendors are regularly invited to the site. Some 
people remarked about the possibility of in- 
stalling a seasonal capuchino stand. Employee 
groups like to hold events on the plazas, and 
neighborhood organizations might also like to 
occasionally use the HUD site. The program- 
matic dimensions of this issue warrant further 
research, but clearly there is some demand for 
a variety of spaces that can be created or taken 
down on an as-needed basis. 


Bicycles are currently stored behind a locked 
gate in an east plaza ground floor niche of the 
building. This, however, may not be the best 
or safest place for this function, and the design 
team should explore other possibilities that 
would not only better serve this use but also 
encourage more bicycle commuting. 

Safety should be a key element consid- 

Cameras, guards and patrols are all currently 
ways the agency tries to assure the safety of 
those who use HUD site. Such techniques will 

still be needed after the plazas are redeveloped, 
but the spaces and details of the design itself, 
inchiding lighting, can greatly enhance the 
safety of any outdoor environment. In this 
context, the master plan and derailed proposals 
for the plazas should specifically address safety 
concerns and incorporate design as one aspect 
of a larger safety strategy. 


proposal for the hud plazas and the 
surrounding cityscape - especially 
Seventh Street as a "Special Street" 


THE Potomac River waterfront - should 

BE studied and DEFINED. 
Context is a crucial issue in architecture, and 
in this case, it is important that plans for the 
HUD site complement the city's intentions for 
the area and the public spaces around the 
building. Before coming up with specific pro- 
posals, designers should research Washington's 
Comprehensive Plan, the Streetscape Manual 
and the draft Monumental Core Framework 
for information relevant to the development of 
this sector of the District of Columbia. There 
are, for instance, lighting and landscape stan- 
dards that will eventually be implemented 
along the public right-of-way of Seventh Street, 
SW, and the design team should be aware 
of and integrate its scheme with these plans. 
There may even be an opportunity to imple- 
ment city and GSA/HUD improvements 
simultaneously or tap into other District 
programs that might enhance the quality of 
the plaza designs. 

Immediate Recommendations 

Because the charrette team viewed the develop- 
ment of the master plan for the HUD site and 
detailed proposals for particular components 
of that project - particularly schemes for the 
east and north plazas - as a unified effort, all 
its design guidelines have been discussed in the 
Fundamental Design Principles and Master 
Plan sections of this report. With respect to 
immediate recommendations, the team wanted 
to clarify the first steps it felt were essential 
to actually implementing this GSA/HUD 

Since many issues are involved, design 
responsibility for this project should be 


(See Management and Process Guidelines for 
suggestions regarding the roles and talents that 
should be represented on this team.) The 
charrette team wanted to make it clear that the 
scope of this undertaking is too broad to put in 
the hands of any one designer or artist, however 
respected. Since the development of the HUD 
site touches on subjects as diverse as urban 
design, architectural history, landscape archi- 
tecture, public art and performance spaces, 
experts in several areas will be needed. A few 
key players should be committed full-time to 
the project, while others can serve as occasional 


In the course of the two-day charrette it be- 
came clear that the redesign of the HUD plazas 
is an interesting and complex design challenge. 
The guidelines amplified in the previous two 
sections are an attempt to distill issues that 
merit particular attention, but there may be 

additional needs and concerns that did not 
surface in the charrette discussions. Before 
design begins, a complete site analysis and 
inventory of user needs should be prepared to 
confirm or expand on the charrette findings. 


This assures that the current GSA/HUD 
project is the most effective use of resources, 
and establishes a clear direction and helps the 
planning for future efforts. 

Based on a master plan that has been 
reviewed by the appropriate agencies and 
constituent groups, a detailed design 
should be developed and implemented to 
include the surface treatment and 
waterproofing of the east and north 
plazas as well as other recommended 
enhancements to the site. 
As the project is budgeted, most of the funds 
must be used for waterproofing and paving the 
east and north plazas. In this part of the work, 
the design energy should obviously be focused 
on the materials and details of the paving itself. 
Money for other enhancements, however, is 
not earmarked for particular amenities or for 
particular areas of the HUD site. The design 
team should take advantage of this flexibility to 
implement features in this first phase of the 
redevelopment program that will improve the 
quality of the outdoor environment at HUD 
regardless of location, and simultaneously en- 
courage investment in later stages of the master 
plan vision. One member of the charrette team 
summarized this last strategy in these terms: 
"Sometimes the best way to make sure the 
whole bridge will be built is to build half a 

IIUD building is in the 
foreground with the Mall in 
the upper portion and the 
Southwest Expressway in the 
lower portion. 


Three Conceptual Schemes 

With no intention of limiting or prescribing 
particular solutions, the charrette team divided 
itself into three groups, each of which prepared 
a conceptual scheme for the HUD site to illus- 
trate the guidelines and breadth of options the 
design team should consider. Being simply 
illustrative, there was no ranking or critique of 
the schemes, although it is worth noting that 
there are some remarkable conceptual similari- 
ties among the three proposals. 

The Red Team Proposal 
This scheme is a study in contrasts where each 
plaza is developed with a strong and unique 
character. The proposal envisions activity-filled 
spaces, with performances, farmers market, 
formal gatherings and other events, and re- 
quires very responsive and pro-active manage- 

I The west plaza is dubbed the "employee 
park." It is a green space with movable chairs. 
The cafeteria offers indoor and outdoor eating. 
There are commissions for public art using the 
vents over the underground service area and 
the back wall of L'Enfant Plaza. 

I The north plaza is the performance and gath- 
ering space. It is hallmarked by a sunken am- 
phitheater cradled in the arc of the building. 
The backdrop for the stage is a "water wall." 

I The east plaza is a great pedestrian plaza. The 
automobile drop off has been moved to the 
south plaza and the presence of the garage has 

been minimized by tightening the turning radii 
into and out of that facility. The entire space is 
paved as a work of art. There is a significant 
amount of open space that can be used for 
formal gatherings and performances. Movable 
tables and chairs also encourage more relaxed 
uses. To enclose the space. Seventh Street is 
treated as a strong green edge and above certain 
columns of the parking garage trees are planted 
to introduce a touch of green within selected 
areas of the plaza itself 

!l The south plaza is dedicated to parking and 
dropoff There are designated spaces for per- 
sons with disabilities and van pools. And the 
arcade of the building is used as a porte-cochere 
for the discharge of visitors and employees. 

The Blue Team Proposal 
Overall, there is a hard quality to the design of 
the open space in this scheme. Softness emerges 
in the landscape and the variety of human 
activities that fill the spaces. 

I The west plaza is developed as an intimate 
employee space. It is used for daycare, staff 
events and weekend activities. Comfortable 
seating that complements the aesthetic of the 
building is provided to encourage conversation, 
informal meetings and a more intimate atmo- 
sphere. Creatively designed ramps and stairs 

Garage Entrance/Exit 
7th Street. SW 


Blue Team Diagram 


Three Conceptual Schemes, continued 

provide access to the green space over the un- 
derground service area. Finally, the north end 
of this area is redesigned, perhaps with a new 
paving pattern and different lighting, to recog- 
nize that part oi the west plaza as a major link 
to the CEnfant Plaza Metro station and a path- 
way for employees and the general public. 

I The north plaza is shaped by several uses. 
Surface parking is to be eliminated, and the 
area under the arcade recaptured for pedestri- 
ans and integrated with the unenclosed space. 
The arcade might also be developed as a "de- 
signed " bicycle parking location. The open 
space itself is intensely planted with trees or, as 
an alternative, developed as an amphitheater. 
And a path for the general public, including 
junior high school students, is devised continu- 
ing the procession from the west plaza going to 
and from Metro and around the building to 
and from Seventh Street. 

I The east plaza is designed as a ceremonial and 
pedestrian activity area. Modifications to the 
paving, bollards, and pylon (which might be 
highlighted with lighting, signage and color) 
are coordinated to announce the south lobby as 
HUD's front door. A canopy might be added 
to further emphasize this entry, and the lobby 
glazing is extended into what is now the bike 
parking niche to open up the space and create 
room for exhibits. Also along the building 
edge, the wall behind the central portion of the 

arcade is animated with a mural, a video ex- 
hibit or some seating and access to the cafete- 
ria. On the plaza itself, the design explores 
options for relocating the garage ramps and 
develops the area for agency ceremonies as well 
as a regular schedule of public performances 
and outdoor markets. Movable tables and 
chairs and temporary stages are available nearby 
to accommodate these and other more informal 
and impromptu activities. Along Seventh 
Street, a line of trees and/or flags is installed in 
furtherance of the city's plans for this "Special 
Street" and establish an edge for the plaza. 

I The south plaza is reconfigured as the prin- 
ciple automobile dropoff for VIPs, hopefully 
eliminating the need for a driveway on the east 
plaza. There is also limited parking in this area. 
The major design feature is a carefully detailed 
procession, including lighting, paving and 
bollards, bringing people from their cars to the 
main entrance on the east plaza. 

The Green Team Proposal 
"Paving as art " is the central idea in this 
scheme. This paving ties the entire site to- 
gether, runs under the arcades and even into 
the building. The paving is a garden. It can be 
decorative. It can be didactic. It can indicate 
areas of activities and events. 

I The west plaza is a green, intimate, people 
space. The basement edge of L'Enfant Plaza is 
transformed into a green wall. Vents over the 
underground service area are redesigned as a 
work of art. The planting in and access to that 


higher area are dramatically improved. The 
north end of this area is developed as a play- 
ground next to the daycare center which is 
moved to the ground floor. 

I The north plaza is given over entirely to pe- 
destrians. The open space is intensely planted. 
And "paving as art" continues its movement 
from the west plaza pathways under the shelter- 
ing arcade. 

I The east plaza is an intense space. Turning 
areas into and out of the garage are made as 
small as possible. Flags line Seventh Street on 
poles of varying heights and heavily planted 
triangles of land mark the north and south 
boundaries of the plaza. An artwork canopy or 

awning announces the south lobby as HUD's 
main entrance. Vendors, who store their carts 
in the ground floor niches, are invited to mar- 
ket food and other goods in this area, and mov- 
able tables and chairs allow employees and the 
general public to reconfigure the space as suits 
their needs and mood. The arcade has special 
lighting and is defined as a venue for changing 
exhibits. The paving is thought of as a mural, a 
mosaic, a map, or a landscape that might even 
incorporate in-ground TV monitors with im- 
ages of flowing water on their screens. 

I As a contrast to the green north space, the 
south plaza has a hard surface and simply con- 
tinues the "paving as art" theme including the 
area under the arcade. 

(irili Cm'IP Cut 

Green Team Diagram 


Management AND Process Guidelines 

The charrette team presented these guideUnes 
as strategies that would help assure the highest 
quality design outcomes. 

This project should be assigned to a 
racially and ethnically diverse design 
team that includes these roles and 
expertise (not all need to be full-time 
members of the team): 

I A landscape architect (team leader) 

I An artist 

I An environmental signage/graphic designer 

I An urban designer 

I Theatrical and architectural lighting 

I A traffic consultant 

I A theater production manager 

I A festival consultant 

Most of these recommendations are self ex- 
planatory, but a tew words should be said about 
the theater production manager and the festival 
consultant. The charrette team did not propose 
any specific guidelines regarding performance 
spaces on the HUD site. It was, however, the 
topic of a question prepared for the charrette, 
and a theater was an idea presented in one of 
the conceptual schemes summarized in the 
preceding section of this report. If the design 
team decides to explore this option, then it 
should seek the counsel of the two professionals 
just mentioned. Successful multi-use public 
performance spaces have very precise require- 
ments that must be carefully developed in any 
design proposal. In addition, managing such 

spaces involves significant expertise and effort 
covering everything from scheduling to promo- 
tion. HUD and GSA should be aware of these 
commitments in advance. 

Based on the premise that quality 
requires good clients as well as good 
designers, this project should have 
an ombudsman representing the clients 
(hud and gsa) who will serve as an 
advocate for excellence, coordinate 
feedback to the design team, and help 
assure that decisions are made in a 
timely fashion. 

Every project requires a sort of "mayor" that 
sees to it that the vision for the design is ful- 
filled. This person remains focused on broad 
goals, while keeping things moving in a pro- 
ductive and positive direction. 


Administrative representatives from HUD 
and GSA who can facilitate and streamline 
decision making 

A small number of user representatives 
who will coordinate input from both employ- 
ees and the community 

I Representatives from the District of 
Columbia's Office of Planning, Department 
of Public Works and the Commission on 
Arts and Humanities 

This client team combination should be able 
to sort out programmatic priorities and provide 
an effective review of the content and form of 
various design proposals. 

". . . tj we had been involved 
earlier on as the ultimate users 
of the plaza, during the design 
phase, we woidd have saved 
money, and would be able to 
coordinate more types of activi- 
ties. What HUD has given us 
the opportunity to do for them 
today will open up their own 
options in the future. " 

- Michael Alexander 


The design group should 
reflect hud's commitment 
to racially and ethnically 
diverse team building. 

Beyond putting together the best design 
and client teams, a process and work 
program should be designed to assure 
timely decision making and the well 
managed use of financial and human 

In any complex project - especially one that 
involves bureaucracies and multiple agencies - 
if the decision making process is not clear and 
expeditious, efforts cannot only get bogged 
down but the ultimate quality of the undertak- 
ing risks being compromised. From the outset, 
it has to be known where responsibilities lie as 
well as who makes decisions and how they 
intend to exercise that prerogative. 

Within HUD, someone needs to be 

Like buildings, successful outdoor spaces 
require care and attention. As this project is 
developing, the person at HUD who will ulti- 
mately be responsible for the plazas should be 
identified, involved in the design process, and 
have a clear understanding of the design's in- 
tent and the resources that will be available to 
maintain the spaces. Over the long-term, this 
individual is responsible for maintaining the 
integrity of the design as "small" decisions 
(trash cans, benches, painting, etc.) are made 


Appendix 1 : Summary of the Guidelines 

Fundamental Design 

I Humanism should be rhe 
guiding force in the redevelop- 
ment of the HUD plazas. 

I The plazas should primarily 
be designed to serve pedestri- 
ans. Cars should only be a 
secondary consideration in the 

I Art should be a compelling 
and integral aspect of any 
design proposal. 

I The design should embody 
"HUD-iness," creating an 
appropriate image for the 
agency and helping to gener- 
ate a strong self-image for 
HUD employees. 

I There should be provisions 
in the design concept to in- 
clude demonstrations of what 
HUD is about. 

I The design should be a "the- 
ater of contrast" reflecting the 
diversity of HUD's constitu- 
ents and its staff 

I To the extent that design 
elements reflect HUD's mis- 
sion, the project should sensi- 
tively incorporate evolutionary 
additions to the plaza ac- 
knowledging Breuer's original 
vocabulary but perhaps, at 
times, contrasting with it. 

I The design should avoid 
"trendy" solutions. 

I Reflecting HUD's mission, 
the design should strive to be 
a good neighbor responding to 
the nearby community and 
the city as well as to the status 
of the building as a federal 
agency headquarters. 

I The design should respond 
to three distinct user groups: 

Employees and those 
coming as HUD guests or 
on HUD business (the Sam 
to 5 pm crowd). 

Local residents and those 
who come to the area after 
5 pm. 

Daily, weekend and 
out-of-town visitors. 

Master Planning 
AND Long-Range 
Design Guidelines 

I Movement to, through and 
around the HUD site should 
be clear and gracious. 

I Places of entry should be 
well defined. 

I The development of a 
quality environment that is 
universally accessible should 
be a high priority. 

I As a long-range goal, strate- 
gies should be developed to 
allow the removal of the vast 
majority of at-grade parking 
on the site. In the interim, the 
aesthetics of parking should 
take precedence over capacity. 

I Paving, color and lighting 
should be carefully considered 
aspects of the design. 

I The relationships among 
and uses of the plazas should 
be clarified. 

I The east plaza should be 
developed as a "ceremonial " 

I The west plaza should be 
redesigned to better respond 
to its site conditions and the 
various ways it is used by 
office workers and commuters. 

I The design should 
incorporate facilities for 
HUD's daycare operation. 

I "Greenery" should be a 
theme in the design, exploring 
non-plant as well as living 
materials as alternatives for 
satisfying this criteria. 

I In addition to any perma- 
nent features, the design 
should support a variety of 
temporary uses and structures. 

I As bicycles are an important 
means of commuting, they 
should be accommodated 
within the design. 

I Safety should be an element 
considered in all aspects of the 
planning and development of 
this project. 

I The relationships between 
the design proposal for the 
HUD plazas and the sur- 
rounding cityscape - especially 
Seventh Street as a "Special 
Street" and as a major link 
from the Mall to the Potomac 
River waterfront - should be 
studied and defined. 



I Since many issues are in- 
volved, design responsibility 
for this project should be 
assigned to a multi-disciplin- 
ary team. 

I A thorough site analysis and 
assessment of user needs 
should be developed as 
groundwork for later plan- 
ning and design work. 

I As part of the first phase of 
the current undertaking, the 
design team should be com- 
missioned to prepare a con- 
ceptual master plan for the 
entire site. 

I Based on a master plan that 
has been reviewed by the ap- 
propriate agencies and con- 
stituent groups, a detailed 
design should be developed 
and implemented to include 
the surface treatment and 
waterproofing of the east and 
north plazas as well as other 
recommended enhancements 
to the site. 

Management AND 
Process Guidelines 

I This project should be as- 
signed to a racially and ethni- 
cally diverse design team that 
includes these roles and exper- 
tise (not all need to be full- 
time members of the team) : 

A landscape architect 
(team leader) 

An artist 

An environmental signage/ 
graphic designer 

An urban designer 

Theatrical and architectural 
lighting consultants 

A traffic consultant 

A theater production 

A festival consultant 

I Based on the premise that 
quality requires good clients 
as well as good designers, this 
project should have an om- 
budsman representing the 
clients (HUD and GSA) who 
will serve as an advocate for 
excellence, coordinate feed- 
back to the design team, and 
help assure that decisions are 
made in a timely fashion. 

I In addition to the ombuds- 
man, the client team should 
include these roles: 

Administrative representatives 
from HUD and GSA who can 
facilitate and streamline deci- 
sion making. 

A small number of user repre- 
sentatives who will coordinate 
input from both employees 
and the community. 

Representatives from the 
District of Columbia's Office 
of Planning, the Department 
of Public Works and the 
Commission on Arts and 

I Beyond putting together the 
best design and client teams, 
a process and work program 
should be designed to assure 
timely decision making and 
the well managed use of finan- 
cial and human resources. 

I Within HUD, someone 
needs to be given responsibil- 
ity and the necessary resources 
for managing the plazas in 
order to be certain that uses 
and activities will occur as 


Appendix 2: the Charrette Team and Agency Participants 

Charrette Team 

M. David Lee 

FAIA (Boston, MA) Team Chair 

David Lee is Vice-President of the architectural 
and planning firm of StuU and Lee, Inc. in 
Boston and an adjunct professor in urban de- 
sign at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. 
He served as principal-in-charge of urban de- 
sign for Boston's award-winning Southwest 
Corridor Transit Project and recently com- 
pleted Biscayne Bay Apartment, a 438 unit 
mixed use residential and commercial project 
in downtown Miami, and the new Roxbury 
Post Office in Boston. Current projects under 
Mr. Lee's direction include the modernization 
and expansion of the New York City Transit 
Authority Main Street Station and the renova- 
tion ot Harvard University's Pennypacker and 
Hurlbut Dormitories. He also directs the firm's 
participation in the coordinating architectural 
team for Boston's $6.4 billion Central Artery 
Reconstruction and Third Harbor Tunnel 
Project. He is a Fellow of the American Insti- 
tute of Architects and the Institute for Urban 
Design. He has taught at the Rhode Island 
School of Design, Massachusetts Institute of 
Technology, and Harvard University. Mr. Lee 
has served on the Presidential Design Awards 
jury and as a faculty participant for the Mayor's 
Institute for City Design. He received a Bach- 
elor of Architecture degree from the University 
of Illinois and a master's in Architecture and 
Urban Design from Harvard University. 

Michael Alexander 
(Los Angeles, CA) 

Michael Alexander is Artistic Director of Cali- 
fornia Plaza for Metropolitan Structures West, 
Inc. in Los Angeles. He is responsible for 
designing and executing a year-round program 
of arts and entertainment for the public in the 
outdoor performance areas of the mixed-use 
redevelopment Bunker Hill project. Previously, 
he was the director of performing arts at the 
Cultural Affairs Department of Los Angeles 
where his primary focus was on issues affecting 
local performing artists. Mr. Alexander was 
also the general manager of the Aman Folk 
Ensemble and worked for the San Francisco 
Ballet. For several years, he was an independent 
consultant and arts manager and served on 
the boards for the California Confederation 
of the Arts, the Association of American Dance 
Companies, and the Western Alliance of Arts 

Peter Blake 

FAIA (Branford, CT) 

Peter Blake has been a practicing architect since 
1956 and Professor of Architecture at The 
Catholic University of America since 1979, 
including Chairman of the Department of 
Architecture and Planning from 1979-1986. 
He served as FAkor-'in-CWief of Architecture 
P/its And Architectural Forurti magazines. He 
also has served as curator of the Department of 
Architecture and Industrial Design at the Mu- 
seum of Modern Art. He has written numerous 
articles and several books on architecture in- 
cluding No Place Like Utopia, Form Follows 
Fiasco: Why Modern Architecture Hasn't Worked, 
God's Oivn Junkyard, and The Master Builders. 
He received a Distinguished Designer Fellow- 
ship from the National Endowment tor the 
Arts and has been a Fellow of the Graham 
Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine 

Arts and the American Institute of Architects. 
He has been a speaker at and delegate to several 
professional conferences in the U.S., Europe, 
and India and is a past chairman of the Inter- 
national Design Conference in Aspen. He 
studied in the United Kingdom, and received 
a Bachelor of Architecture with honors Irom 
Pratt Institute, School of Architecture. 

Reginald W. Griffith 
(Washington, DC) 

Reginald Griffith became the Executive Direc- 
tor of the National Capital Planning Commis- 
sion in May 1979, following four years as the 
Commission's Vice Chair. The Commission is 
the federal government's central planning 
agency for the National Capital Region. In his 
role as Executive Director, Mr. Griffith is the 
administrative and technical head of the Com- 
mission staff and is responsible lor managing 
the Commission's day-to-day operations, for- 
mulating and recommending policies and pro- 
grams, and implementing those policies ap- 
proved by the Commission. Prior to his ap- 
pointment as Executive Director, he was princi- 
pal of Griffith Associates, an architectural, 
planning and community development firm in 
Washington, DC; was a Vice President of the 
American Institute of Planners and a Board 
member of ASPO (now the American Planning 
Association); and is past Chairman of the 
Howard University Department of City and 
Regional Planning. He has studied housing and 
planning problems in Ghana and Nigeria as a 
Traveling Fellow of the Institute of Interna- 
tional Education, was a Visiting Scholar at 
M.I.T., and a Professorial Lecturer in Urban & 
Regional Planning at George Washington Uni- 
versity. Mr. Griffith holds a master's degree in 
city planning and a bachelor's degree in archi- 
tecture, both from the Massachusetts Institute 
of Technology. 

Pamela G. Holt 
(Washington, DC) 

Pamela Holt is the Executive Director of the 
D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities 
and the Mayor's Advisor for Cultural Affairs. 
She is currently the Vice Chair of the Associa- 
tion of American Cultures, founding board 
member and Vice Chair of Finance for the 
National Cultural Alliance, and head of the 
District of Columbia Steering Committee for 
the National Capital Area Public Awareness 
Campaign. Ms. Holt also serves on the Boards 
of the D.C. Committee to Promote Washing- 
ton, the National Association of Local Arts 
Agencies, The U Street Theater Foundation, 
U.S. Urban Arts Federation, the Cultural Alli- 
ance of Greater Washington, D.C. Art/Works, 
the African Theatre Continuum Coalition 
Advisory Board, and represents the Mayor on 
the Board of the Kennedy Center for the Per- 
forming Arts. She holds a Bachelor of Music 
Degree from Howard University and a Master 
of Arts degree from The American University. 
In addition, Ms. Holt has studied at the 
Peabody Conservatory of Music, the University 
of Minnesota and Georgetown University. 
She received the first Outstanding Arts Man- 
agement Alumna Award from The American 
University and is a graduate of the 1 994 Lead- 
ership Washington Program. 

Nora Jaso 
(Seattle, WA) 

Nora Jaso, principal of Studio Jaso, her Seattle 
design firm, has been practicing architecture 
since 1982. Dedicated to cultural and artistic 
expression. Studio Jaso serves diverse individu- 
als, communities, public agencies and non- 
profit groups. Current work centers on the 


Appendix 2: the Charrette Team and Agency Participants, continued 

design of low-income and special needs hous- 
ing, specifically housing for the homeless cli- 
ents of CONSEJO, a Hispanic mental health 
counseling center, and for the Northwest AIDS 
Foundation. Among other of the firm's major 
clients are the City of Seattle, El Centro de la 
Raza and Food Markets NW. Ms. Jaso is a past 
member of Seattle's innovative METRO Arts 
Committee and a design review member of the 
city's Pike Place Market Historical Commis- 
sion. Ms. Jaso has received numerous honors, 
including exhibitions, publication and design 
awards. She appeared in the 1993 "Young 
Architects " issue of Progressive Architecture in 
collaboration with her colleagues of the Asso- 
ciation for Women in Architecture. Ms. Jaso 
earned her bachelor of arts degree from McGill 
University in Montreal, studied at the Rhode 
Island School of Design and received her mas- 
ter of architecture degree from the University 
of Washington in Seattle. 

Debra L. Mitchell 
ASAL (Washington, DC) 

Debra L. Mitchell is senior principal and direc- 
tor of the Mid-Atlantic office of the landscape 
architecture firm Johnson Johnson & Roy/inc. 
Her background in the natural sciences and 
landscape architecture is coupled with an im- 
pressive record of group facilitation and com- 
munity leadership. Ms. Mitchell's experience 
includes the design of major urban streetscapes, 
large mixed-use developments and corporate 
headquarters, including the Alamo Plaza 
TriParty Transportation Improvement Project 
and The Crossroads of San Antonio in 

San Antonio, TX; Fair Park Link Phase II 
streetscape. Maple Avenue Improvements, 
Meadow Park Office Building, and University 
of Texas Southwestern Medical Center roof-top 
garden/plaza in Dallas, TX; Central Park Mall 
East, Omaha, NE; and The American Rose 
Center Master Plan, Shreveport, LA. She is 
the imniediate past president of the American 
Society of Landscape Architects and served as 
vice chairman and chairman of the City of 
Dallas Landmark Commission from 1987-1991. 
Ms. Mitchell has taught at the University of 
Texas at Arlington and has served on the profes- 
sional advisory committee of the Department 
of Landscape Architecture at the University of 
Illinois since 1988. She received an B.S. from 
Kansas University and a Master of Landscape 
Architecture from the University of Illinois. 

Robert Peck 
(Washington, DC) 

Robert Peck is Group Vice President for Exter- 
nal Affairs at the American Institute of Archi- 
tects and a member of the Commission on Fine 
Arts. His previous experience includes chief of 
staff to U.S. Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan 
and associate counsel to the Senate Committee 
on Environmental and Public Works. He helped 
draft and secure passage of the Public Buildings 
Cooperative Use Act, which encourages the 
reuse of historic buildings as government offices 
and permits commercial mixed-use in federal 
buildings. Mr. Peck is a past president of the 
D.C. Preservation League and has been a visit- 
ing lecturer in art history at Yale University and 
a Loeb fellow in Advanced Environmental Stud- 
ies at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. 
His writings include a chapter on 1920s and 


1930s government architecture in The Federal 
Presence and a paper included in "Issues in 
Supporting the Arts." He received his B.A. cum 
laude in economics for the University of Penn- 
sylvania and his J.D. from Yale Law School. 

Jay S. Willis 
(Pasadena, CA) 

Jay S. Willis is a three-dimensional artist and 
a Professor of Fine Arts at the University of 
Southern California where he has taught since 
1969. Since 1990, he has been the founding 
director of Public Art Studies and was chair 
of studio arts at USC from 1988-1989. Mr. 
Willis' work has been exhibited nationally and 
internationally with more than a dozen one- 
person exhibitions in the U.S. His work is in 
numerous private, corporate and museum 
collections, including the Metropolitan Mu- 
seum of Art, NY; Hirshhorn Museum and 
Sculpture Garden, Smithsonian Institution, 
Washington, DC; Moore College of Art, 
Philadelphia; Del Mar College, Corpus Christi, 
TX; Laguna Beach Museum of Art, Laguna 
Beach, CA; and Walker Hill Art Museum, 
Seoul, Korea. He has received commissions 
from the Alcoa Foundation-University of 
Southern California, Sculpture Garden Collec- 
tion, Los Angeles; Pasadena Plaza, Ernest W. 
Hahn Inc., Pasadena, CA; Pacific Enterprises, 
Los Angeles; and numerous other corporations. 
Recent honors include being a public art com- 
petition finalist for the City of Irvine and for 
the City of Thousand Oaks. Mr. Willis received 
a B.F.A. in sculpture from the University of 
Illinois, Urbana, and a M.A. in sculpture from 
the University of California, Berkeley. 


AND Urban Development 

Marilynn A. Davis 

Assistant Secretary 
for Administration 

Marie Kissick 

Director, Office of 
Administrative and 
Management Services 

Marianne Jentilucci 

Director, Facilities 
Operations Division 

Department of 

Crawford F. Grigg 

Chief, Real Property Division 

General Services 

Rolando Rivas-Camp, AIA 

Supervisory Architect, 
Arts and Historic 
Preservation Division 

Andrea Mones-O'Hara 

Regional Historic Preservation 
and Fine Arts Officer, 
National Capital Region 

Robert Andrukonis, RA 

Architectural Section Chief, 
National Capital Region 

National Endowment 
for the Arts 

H. Alan Brangman, AIA 

Acting Director, 
Design Program 

Thomas Grooms 

Program Manager, 

Federal Design Improvement, 

Design Program 


Thomas Walton 

Associate Professor, 
School of Architecture 
and Planning, 
The Catholic University 
of America 


Appendix 3: Charrette Agenda 

Wednesday, 29 June 1994 

8:45am Welcome 

H. Alan Brangman, AIA 

Acting Director, Design Program, 
National Endowment for the Arts 

Rolando Rivas-Camp, AIA 

Supervisory Architect, 

Arts and Historic Preservation, 

General Services Administration 

Marilynn A. Davis 

Assistant Secretary for Administration, 
Department of Housing and 
Urban Development 

9:00 am Briefing on the History of the Site 
and Building, and Development of 
Southwest Washington, DC 

Andrea Mones-O'Hara 

Regional Historic Preservation 

and Fine Arts Officer, 

General Services Administration 

9:30 am Briefing on the District of 

Columbia's Comprehensive Plan 

Reginald W. Griffith 
Director, National Capital 
Planning Commission 

9:45 am Tour of Site 

Marianne C. Jentilucci 

Director, Facilities Operations 
Division, Department of Housing 
and Urban Development 

1 1 :00am Briefing on Community Interests: 

District of Columbia Commission 
on the Arts and Humanities 
Advisory Neighborhood 
Commission 2-D 

St. Dominic's Catholic Church 

(no representative attended) 

Jefferson Junior High School 
(no representative attended) 

12:00 am Briefing by HUD Employees 
and Union Representatives 

12:30pm Lunch 

1:30 pm Video: City Spaces, Human Places 

by William Whyte 

2:30pm Charrette Teams and Observers: 

Charrette Convenes with 
Discussion of Presentations and 
Topics to Organize Agenda and 
Charrette Format 

David Lee, Chair 
3:30 pm Break 
3:45pm Cha rrette 

Thursday, 30 June 1994 

8:30am Charrette 

12:00am Lunch 

l:0()pm Charrette 

3:30 pm Wrap Up and Preparation 
for Presentation 

4:30 pm Summary Design Guideline Presentation 
(video taped)